Miles Of Warm Hearts

Feeling everything from every direction,
A welcome mat I never bought,
You say come in,
You don’t speak a word to me – never,
Whether you were ever here to begin with is yet to be determined,
And my being drifts into imagination,
Stories you inhabit,
Imaginary tales you never told,
Telling myself stories I’ll never write,
You know,
You did enough for me to write forever,
You’re never far away,
You’re never too close,
You’re the reason,
I walk,
I crawl,
Your memory crushes,
Miles upon miles of hearts I stole.

Back to Being

The eagerness in my soul guiding me toward the shiniest parts of life,

Anything that makes me smile,

Revel in time,

Spill my very best into the holes of life,

Until sounds nourish,

Float through my being,

Shutting my eyes to sway,

To the wondrous ways my heart has been touched.

Dear Jeffrey, 10 days until you’re 28….

I remember you,

Though I age my lines get deeper and defined,

While yours go unchanged and more soft-focused with time,

All the heaviness fades to lightness as I grow into being,

A fantasy life, I imagine, who you could be,

I remember you,

Surfing through people with attention and ease,

Looking for neglectful and clumsy me,

Your spirit was so free,

Mine locked down by judgmental, grudge-filled, heady thinking,

I remember you,

Exuding happiness into everything,

Most of which I inevitably drained,

A smile in the world you left behind,

Beamed life into my soul,

What you already knew,

I’m still finding out,

I remember you,

You taught me what life was about.

-Your sister (Friday, the 13th of August in 2010)

Overheard at My Own Funeral

I’m not sure why my mind puts my mom there unless it somehow thinks life will cut my life shorter than hers, or I’m afraid of her and death in the same sentence at all. Regardless, for the sake of this morbid question and for plain good storytelling let’s assume she is there. Assuming my body arrived safely in Oklahoma (pun intended) and if they do carry out my final wishes for cremation, I would probably laugh (can a fly laugh?) at the sight of these people – family, friends from all walks of life, business associates, and people that hate me there just to make sure I actually did die – sitting there in emotional trance staring at this silly little urn. I’m not a religious person by any stretch of the imagination, but my mother is so I will stress that my little beady fly eyes better not see a single pew. The officiant (who better not be a pastor of any sort) reads off a Buddhist passage from Thich Nhat Hanh on death and once he finishes the music starts. I spend a lot of time floating around in my mind and visiting people that have passed through, experiences that affixed itself to my mental postcards, and seeing what I may have missed the first time around, so since my journey is over I hope that someone else begins to float.

Sitting there as my soundtrack begins with Oasis’ “Stop Crying Your Heart Out”, Carolyn comments on the selection and then mentions how she’ll miss Rhoda (me) so I land on her shoulder and buzz “I’m the Mary.”

A few of the Antlers guys including my ex-step father David, true to discriminatory form, mention what a loss it was (of course they aren’t referring to my actual death but my sexuality).

After the first song, the Buddhist-slanting officiant opens the floor for sharing. Stormi steps up first and tells stories that make people laugh because that is who I used to be. She talks about us being so broke when we lived together that we ate bologna sandwiches every day. How we drove the 3-hour stretch from Stillwater to home penniless and with the gas light flashing for 80% of it (you would be surprised at how many times it will come on before your car sputters at all), and when we were forced to get gas we filled it up and sped out of the gas station without paying. See, in New Jersey that is impossible because it’s never self-serve. She’ll then mention how it unleashed a crookedness in us we never knew we had and lead us into Pizza Hut and we fed and ran, fast, hopped in our car with the stolen gas and went home.

My friend Lance would read a poem because he told me there was too much poetry in my soul to get my MBA. I love poetry, and I hope there are several more that read some prose at my permanent going away party.

More music, Khalil Gibran reading, and at the end a reference to my favorite author – Milan Kundera – when the officiant says “Please join me on Jeffrey’s mountain where Alisa will be thrown to the winds – the last symbol of eternal lightness.”

It’s there that all this comes out: Alisa was…fearless, creative, quirky, hard to comfort, funny, thought she was witty but she wasn’t, forgiving and perhaps too forgiving, strong, a wordsmith, a good communicator of the abstract, batshit crazy, not shy, loyal, clumsy, the most outgoing introvert, what you see is what you get, moody, good at keeping secrets but never having any, silly, fascinating to rapidly boring, and then someone will say what a great playlist.

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Go now, and live.

Remember Your Voice

Your voice,

Faint and fighting for recall,

Bouncing back and forth inside my head,

I can’t catch it but perhaps with good reason,

I wonder if I would remember it in an instant,

Or would it pass me by like our lives,

Collided and broke off into a million tiny pieces,

Floating in a space I can’t grasp,

Particles of you move too fast,

No matter how hard I tried,

I’m not meant to hold that part in my hand,

Your voice once so familiar,

Now struggles for recognition.

Karma Racking


Indelicate little mind,

You’ve settled in between,

Choices of courage,

Dangled from the mistakes we knew we were making,

In taking this on autopilot,

The road less traveled I always took,

Dead ends every time,

Suffered and restructured little soul,

Too big for your britches,

Painting stories against the grain,

But few people enjoy splinters,

They’re not like you and me,

Using a needle to set it free,

Then stitching each other up,

You can only go so far,

All sewn up,

Threads unravel,

Then they shred,

Until all you have left,

Is the safety in-between,

Active re-collector,

How time has left you behind,

Tramping through the land of the blind,

At all you’ve seen,

With the entourage of your mind,

Doesn’t mean a thing,

When too much is at stake,

With time,

This time,

Karma racking.

Smile of demise.

Of all the things we’ve survived,

On the road to our demise,

I miss your wild antic smile,

It got me everytime.

Regretful Harvest

You’re painful, you see,

Ripping through my skin like you’re my demon,

Scratching at my surface to be free,

Listen to me,

I listened to you long ago,

You’ve come back for me,

Skinning me each and every day,

Your memory haunts me,

In ways I couldn’t have known,

If I could have known you wouldn’t have been exiled,

Disposed of in such vein,

This karma reaping through me with vengeance,

All my yesterdays cursed in your name,

You provoked an innocence you couldn’t keep,

Leaving me to suffer after your presence no longer seeped,

Into my habit,

Into my routine,

Into the martini that ruined me,

Drown my sorrows that I couldn’t change,

Promises abandoned with disdain,

Charm that died in ignorance and lies,

Far beyond wanting back,

Far beyond who we used to be,

Far beyond regret,

At least you wished me well,

I bet you got the best of life,

Didn’t even know that I fell,

Hit my head,

Fueled my dread,

My life derailed,

I figure you won all your wars,

Life gave you beauty and warmth,

With all that you sowed,

Loving such a dark me,

That tore through your crops,

An unforgettable harvest,

Weathered the bad,

To remember the good,

You were always foolish,

Believing in someone like me,

Who realized too late,

How much you meant.

The World Around Us Disappeared.


Those words you wrote,

The words I read,

You bled between the lines,

I’m a slow learner, stubborn you know,

Of course you knew,

Wordsmiths, we were,

You knew I’d catch bloodletting,

In the inflections once I reflect,

Notes we wrote when the world disappeared,

They didn’t outlast life,

But I held on to the one I recently read,

You were a great writer,

Much better than I,

You’ll deny, I know this about you,

Behind the text,

Behind the disguise,

The research,

The creativity,

When the vice downgraded to habit,

And habit to memory,

You kept your promise for no contact,

Your will I never doubt,

My will, wishy-washy,

I would have damaged us more,

The earth cracked,

I fell in,

Never to hear from you again,

You kept your word,

Now I keep mine,

We were never separate entities,

It just took me time,

I’m sorry I took a sledgehammer to your heart,

Pulled out your guts,

Vindictive as I was,

I meant more than I had done,

Wherever you are,

Whoever you are,

You’ve inspired me.

Mutual closure.  Full stop.


**This is the prologue to my Women’s Fiction, Romance, book.**

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